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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I frequently walk the trails of a leash-free forests.<br><br>
Many people repeatedly allow their dogs to come up to me. I don't feel comfortable with dogs semi-blocking my path nor brushing up on me. Ultimately, I'm not worried the dog is going to hurt me, but I don't want it touching me, if for any other reason than poison oak. It seems that people think that if they yell out that their dog is friendly, that this means the dog is free to harass me.<br><br>
Is there some sort of universal body language that conveys that I'm an uptight, non lover of poison oak saturated dogs? I'm sort of serious in that I want to convey my feelings without making it awkward the next time I encounter these same forest regulars.
 

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<div>Originally Posted by <strong>RubyWild</strong> <a href="/community/forum/post/10707410"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">I frequently walk the trails of a leash-free forests.</div>
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Why are the trails leash free? Is there not a leash law there?
 

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I think dog contact is probably inevitable and unavoidable in an area without leash laws or leash requirements. I'm sorry your local forest doesn't have rules about keeping dogs leashed.<br><br>
I have similar problems in areas where leashes are required but of course people let their dogs run free anyway. The scenario is me with my two heeling, well-behaved, leashed dogs, and some hyper golden retriever bounding towards us. One of my dogs is already in a somewhat defensive position. I call out, "Please call off your dog!" and the owner replies, "Oh, he's friendly!" to which I respond, "Maybe, but my dogs AREN'T!"<br><br>
Truth is that one of my dogs is quite friendly and the other is a bit defensive. Both are very well-behaved, but that doesn't mean I expect them to stop acting like dogs when assaulted by a rude dog. Either will go to bat for the other if they feel threatened or that I'm threatened. And some stupid fluffy golden retriever charging at us full-speed ahead seems to count. Gee, I wonder why.<br><br>
I hate dealing with people with poor manners and their failure to control their animals!<br><br>
Sorry, that turned into a rant. I really think you have essentially no way to effectively communicate your distaste for it, though, and aren't even able to say "You're required to leash your dog."
 

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I agree that unfortunatly you might have to go to another place for walks, where there are leash laws.<br><br>
However, my MIL is severly allergic to pretty much anything with fur. (She can't even come to our house because our cats make her so sick). So when she is out and about and an unleashed dog comes up to her, she normally takes a step back and says "I will have to admire your dog from affar, because I have terrible allergies." That is usually enough for the owner to keep their pet back from her.
 

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Most wooded areas up here in Vermont are leash free as well. I personally love it b/c my dog, Percy, needs to be able to run around or shes utterly depressed. I think most people are fine with it, I'm usually one of those people that yell out that my dog is friendly and assume it's alright. Sorry. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/redface.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Embarrassment"> Ive just never had a problem before, everyone has always said it's fine and pet her.<br>
That said I try to keep Percy close if there's kids. I would be very open to some kind of sign for 'please keep your dog away from me' though. Maybe both hands up? Like I'm not touching her please don't let her touch me?
 

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I wouldn't like that. What if you had a stroller with kids in it? How do you separate dogs if one is aggressive? That would just make me so nervous.
 

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<div>Originally Posted by <strong>*Aimee*</strong> <a href="/community/forum/post/10707946"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">I wouldn't like that. What if you had a stroller with kids in it? How do you separate dogs if one is aggressive? That would just make me so nervous.</div>
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Then I'm assuming you wouldn't go to a place that was leash free.
 

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<div>Originally Posted by <strong>fek&fuzz</strong> <a href="/community/forum/post/10707741"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">I think you'll be better off finding a leash-required place to run.</div>
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yeah me too. If it's leash free, then it's leash free. I'd find something that better meet my needs then.
 

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I agree, I would find some other trail that has a leash law if you are uncomfortable.<br><br>
We walk on leash-free trails all the time, with our dog not on a leash. I don't let them run up to other people, though. I call them back and have them sit while the person walks by.
 

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<div>Originally Posted by <strong>~*Jaime</strong> <a href="/community/forum/post/10707871"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">I agree that unfortunatly you might have to go to another place for walks, where there are leash laws.</div>
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I agree.<br><br>
And it makes me furious when people let their dogs off leashes in local parks, and they approach my younger dd, who is petrified of large dogs. I don't care if your dog is "friendly"; obey the law and keep it on a *^*^% [email protected]!!!
 

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<div>Originally Posted by <strong>Verity</strong> <a href="/community/forum/post/10709553"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">I agree.<br><br>
And it makes me furious when people let their dogs off leashes in local parks, and they approach my younger dd, who is petrified of large dogs. I don't care if your dog is "friendly"; obey the law and keep it on a *^*^% [email protected]!!!</div>
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<img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/clap.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="clap"> My kids are really uneasy around big dogs too and it boggles my mind how people just let their dogs climb all over kids and think they can excuse it with a "he's just trying to say hi!" or whatever. Grrrr.
 

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<div>Originally Posted by <strong>NiteNicole</strong> <a href="/community/forum/post/10709540"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">Just call out that you're highly allergic and don't have your epi pen. That should take care of it.</div>
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<img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/lol.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="lol"> I don't think you meant this to be funny but it totally cracked me up thinking of all the OTHER uses for this one. I'll have to remember it. lol
 

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I have to agree with previous posters. It's a leash-free park. For every leash-free park, there are usually many, many parks that require leashes. If I were you, I would find one of those parks. If you're having the same problem, I think the hands-up combined with "Please call off your dog" will usually do the trick.
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
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<div>Originally Posted by <strong>FiddleMama</strong> <a href="/community/forum/post/10710141"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">I have to agree with previous posters. It's a leash-free park. For every leash-free park, there are usually many, many parks that require leashes. If I were you, I would find one of those parks. If you're having the same problem, I think the hands-up combined with "Please call off your dog" will usually do the trick.</div>
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To clarify, there are rules about leash free areas, one being that the dog must be on voice command.<br><br>
The place I go is in the miles and miles of forest trails around my town. It's not a park, it's owned by the University. If I want to find somewhere else to go, that would be in the city, which, you know, is not the point at all. The point is to be in the forests, the miles and miles and miles of forest trails. My hikes are typically 8-12 miles long.<br><br>
So, given that I am going to hike in the forests and not in the city, I was looking for a way to communicate my desire for people to have their dog on voice command. I wrote to the Forestry Dept and suggested that there be Dog Etiquettes signs posted at the trail heads. She actually emailed me immediately, said that was a great idea and cc'ed this to the Recreation Manager!!!<br><br>
Of course, many will ignore these types of signs, if they actually get posted, but it will give me a better starting point on how to deal with this nuisance.
 

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<div>Originally Posted by <strong>an_aurora</strong> <a href="/community/forum/post/10709083"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;"><br>
We walk on leash-free trails all the time, with our dog not on a leash. I don't let them run up to other people, though. I call them back and have them sit while the person walks by.</div>
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Thank you for doing that, I like dogs from afar, but don't like them to come near me. Shouting oh he's friendly is of no use to me. I don't like dogs near me since being bitten and chased as a child. I'm still short and have been bowled over easily by a lab. Even in leash free areas people should have control over their animals.
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
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<div>Originally Posted by <strong>MCR</strong> <a href="/community/forum/post/10711075"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">. Even in leash free areas people should have control over their animals.</div>
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Yes, thank you. It amazes me how many people don't know this, that leash-free doesn't mean free-for-all.<br><br>
The animal is only allowed to be off the leash if the person can completely control the dog without one. Otherwise, people and dogs could be hurt.
 

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<div>Originally Posted by <strong>Romana9+2</strong> <a href="/community/forum/post/10707479"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">I call out, "Please call off your dog!" and the owner replies, "Oh, he's friendly!" to which I respond, "Maybe, but my dogs AREN'T!"</div>
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Amen to that, I don't understand how some people don't get it! Our property is fenced, our two dogs do not get along well with other dogs and the fence of course exacerbates their aggressiveness, and two separate neighbors have allowed or purposely brought their yappy little dogs right up to the fence to "say hi" to our snarling 85lb dogs. Seriously, people, this is a good idea why????
 

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<div>Originally Posted by <strong>fek&fuzz</strong> <a href="/community/forum/post/10707741"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">I think you'll be better off finding a leash-required place to run.</div>
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I agree. While I understand your frustration, it is equally frustrating for owners of exuberant dogs to not have anywhere for them to run, especially if they live in a small space (apartment or house, etc).<br><br>
When I did dog walking, I'd take the dogs out on trails intended for off leash, but there were many trails in the park that were intended for runners which didn't allow dogs off-leash. So, everyone got a space to enjoy.
 
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